The Rick, Week 4 – 2023
By Rick Notari, BDFN
(1932-535 overall, .783 winning percentage)

 Dare I say, Parity!

The Rick has long complained that football in District 2 was cut-and-dry from Week 1. The great teams would always be great, the bad teams would always be bad, and the mediocre would be, well, mediocre. So far in the LFC and WVC, that may not be the case.

Are we seeing shift? Is there parity among the masses? The Rick looks at this week’s slate of games and well, I really cannot come to a conclusion on nine of the 17 games. I mean I could take a soft lean to one or another, but more than the half of the games can go down to the wire and end up being one score games.

There is a great mix this season of teams re-loading, re-building, and re-branding. It should be a fun week of high school football even if The Rick continues his streak of mediocre picks. Here are The Rick’s picks for Week 4:



May their first child be a masculine child (The Big Boys) 3-0

Scranton Prep at Scranton High

Our first really Big Boy matchup of the season. Undefeated Scranton Prep against undefeated Scranton High. The Cavaliers have yet to be tested and the Knights have played better and better each week. The Rick has gone back and forth in picking a winner here, and while The Prep seems like the obvious choice after running roughshod through the first three week, I keep reminding myself that the Tower on Wyoming Avenue is not as big as the Castle on Mike Munchak Way. This is going to be a fun game to watch as both teams have road-graders in the trenches. The team with the best playmaker is going to win this one.

Knights 27, Cavaliers 23


The Luca Brasi (Toughest Pick of The Week) 1-2

Wilkes-Barre Area at Hazleton Area

The Rick may never figure out the Wyoming Valley Conference. But one thing I do know is that Wilkes-Barre Area is a better team than its record shows. On the other hand, Hazleton Area may be a team that isn’t as good as advertised. The Wolfpack played two very tough LFC teams to open the season. Their victory on the road last week at Wallenpaupack trumps the Cougars losing to the Buckhorns at home the week before. This is a tough pick for The Rick and Hazleton Area will not be a pushover, but.

Wolfpack 28, Cougars 24


Don’t ask me about my business (No Rhyme or Reason) 1-2

Western Wayne at Abington Heights

The Rick would have to be crazy picking against Western Wayne after witnessing in person what the Wildcats did last week in the running game and on defense. Plus, a win this week would go a long way in solidifying and progressing the football program as a year-in-year-out contender in the LFC. But The Rick has also seen what Abington Heights has done the first three weeks of the season. The Comets could easily be 3-0. Their only loss, a Week 1 home game against undefeated Dallas. My guy Coach Zane is not going to be happy with me, but The Rick’s love of tradition takes over here as the Comets host their first game this season at The Pit on Saturday.

Abington Heights 23, Western Wayne 20


Leave the gun, take the cannoli (No-Brainer Pick of The Week) 3-0

Valley West at Crestwood

The Rick will retire from picking games at the end of 2023 if Crestwood goes 0-4. I feel bad for Valley West because Crestwood must be angry after dropping three, one-score games to three of the best teams in all of District 2.  The Comets are hungry for a victory to try and get its train on the tracks. It will not be pretty for the Spartans.

Comets 47, Spartans 12


Going to the mattresses (A Rivalry-type Game) 2-1

Wallenpaupack at Delaware Valley

A rivalry game in Pike County this week as both teams try to right the ship. Wallenpaupack suffered its first loss last week after starting the season with two surprising victories. Delaware Valley has yet to notch a victory, and the schedule will get progressively harder after this week. The Buckhorns who may have been put off by the long weather delay in their loss to WBA, should expect an angry Warriors squad to great them in Milford. Remember last week when The Rick said a perennial dominating program in the WVC was looking at a possible winless season should they lose in Week 3? Is it possible, the same could be said here for Delaware Valley. The Warriors remaining opponents’ combined record is 16-5 with three unbeatens left. If anyone needs to go to the mattresses this week, its DV.

Warriors 32, Buckhorns 17


I ain’t no bandleader (Give Some Respect) 2-1

Lakeland at Susquehanna

What in the name of Touchdown Jesus is going on at Chapman Lake these days? Did The Rick see navy blue uniforms on the Lakeland Chiefs last week against Riverside? Bad enough the Chiefs gave up 46 points against the Vikes with the last nine minutes not played because of bad weather, but to move away from the iconic Lakeland uniform color scheme! The Rick is throwing a penalty flag on that move. On the field, the Chiefs are looking to find themselves on both sides of the football. They can gain some respect this week at Susquehanna. The Sabers bolted out of the gate with two wins, but were slowed expectedly last week at home against Dunmore. A win for dear old Suskie over a perennial powerhouse like Lakeland would pay huge dividends. The Rick is putting his cash on the Navy Chiefs.

Chiefs 44, Sabers 24


Fredo, You broke my heart (Upset Special) 1-2

Dunmore at Riverside

The teams playing in this game may not agree with The Rick that there could possibly be an upset in this game. Both Dunmore and Riverside are 2-1. Both have talented, dynamic athletes on both sides of the football. And an argument can be made that the Vikings will have the best player on the field, and maybe in the entire district wearing the red and white on Friday night. But games are won in the trenches. Yes, we have seen improvement from Riverside, but most outside of the Downvalley are expecting the Dunmore front to dominate the line of scrimmage. That said, the Bucks are the favorite, meaning only one thing to The Rick. The Vikings say, IT WAS YOU FREDO!

Riverside 37, Dunmore 36


Time to settle all Family Business (24-8)

Tunkhannock over Carbondale

Williamsport over Berwick

Mid Valley over Old Forge

Dallas over West Scranton

Valley View over North Pocono

Trail over Honesdale

Pittston Area over Hanover Area

Wyoming Area over Nanticoke

Montrose over Holy Cross

Lake-Lehman over Holy Redeemer



Only one team dropped out of the Big-Six poll this week – Crestwood. And the Comets coaches and players must be scratching their heads as they lost a one-score game for the third time. Make no mistake, Crestwood is a good football team. They just need to figure out a way to get a win. On the Small-Six side we had some jockeying for positioning, but all six teams are the same. Remember, it’s where you finish at the end – not the beginning or the middle. Included in the list are each team’s regular season record and where they were ranked last week.


Here it is….



  1. Valley View (3-0) 1
  2. Dallas (3-0) 2
  3. Scranton (3-0) 3
  4. Wyoming Area (3-0) 4
  5. Abington Heights (2-1) 5
  6. North Pocono (2-1) NR

Just dropped out: Crestwood (0-3) 6



  1. Scranton Prep (3-0) 1
  2. Lackawanna Trail (3-0) 2
  3. Western Wayne (2-1) 4
  4. Dunmore (2-1) 3
  5. Mid Valley (2-1) 5
  6. Riverside (2-1) 6

Outside looking in: Susquehanna (2-1) NR



Here are the District 2 Week 3 Power Rankings according to the number assigned to them by the formula designed by District 2 to seed teams for the playoffs. Here is the Top 10 overall, regardless of class, according to their D2 power ranking:


  1. Dallas (3-0) .748
  2. Trail (3-0) .701
  3. Scranton (3-0) .690
  4. Wyoming Area (3-0) .677
  5. Prep (3-0) .630
  6. Abington Heights (2-1) .619
  7. North Pocono (2-1) .614
  8. Mid Valley (2-1) .598
  9. Valley View (3-0) .590
  10. Wilkes-Barre Area (1-2) .564